Thursday, 19 February 2009

A Foolproof Guide To Repelling Girls

Warning To All Bloggers: Keep a bucket handy, whilst reading this post.

It's fair to say that I kissed a few frogs, in my teenage years, before meeting my prince, in my early 20s. During the extensive search for my other half, I learnt a few things about the male sex and their habits and it recently occurred to me that I could draw up a modern day list, for my 3 sons, which could help them to avoid a few of the common pitfalls, in their own search for true love. I thought that my advice might be better heeded, if I used the title above and presented it as below:

If you arrange to go out with a girl, do it well in advance and don't shower any later than 7 days before you're due to meet up.

If you cleaned your teeth after breakfast, don't clean them again, prior to meeting up with a girl in the evening, as this could neutralise the effects of the raw onion salad with garlic mayo, which you ate for lunch.

Whenever you go out with a girl, don't bother changing the clean clothes you put on 2 weeks' ago. They should be just rank enough for her to notice.

Always make sure that you pick something, if you're in the company of a girl, such as your nose, ears, teeth or scabs. In fact - pick everything. It's best.

Never go to the gents, if you have itchy unmentionables, whilst you are out with a girl. Instead, produce your gentleman's ball scratcher, (pictured above) with a flourish and proceed to push it down the front of your trousers, with unnecessary enthusiasm, accompanied by an ecstatic expression.

When in the pub with a girl, ensure that you overindulge to the extent that you

a) barf all over the bar, when ordering the next round or
b) pick a fight with the only chap in the pub who's built like a brick s**thouse or
c) forget which girl you came in with and go home with someone else.

It is possible to repel your girlfriend early on in your relationship, by showing her your collection of scabs, toe nail clippings, railway magazines, bus tickets, and Kit Kat wrappers.

If you're having a night in, with your girlfriend and she attempts to speak to you, only drag your eyes away from the Xbox for a nanosecond, because those aliens can tell when you're not concentrating, you know.

Mention 'putting out' as often as possible, when in conversation with your girlfriend. All girls need to know that characters like those appearing in American Pie and Superbad, were not fictitious and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, was not purely coincidental.

Always blow your nose with enthusiasm. Try to sound as if you're in danger of dispelling your brains out of your ears. Open up your man-sized tissue, afterwards, and carefully examine any debris. There's always a chance that you'll discover something you thought was lost forever.

Eat as much crap as possible, whenever you're with your girlfriend. Try donner kebabs, or chips with cheese and curry sauce. If that fails, dip anything and everything in Hellmann's mayo.

If you burp, whilst in the presence of your girlfriend, never excuse yourself, politely. In fact, make sure that you furnish her with far too much information by screwing up your face and following up with 'Ugh! That was a sick burp!'

Never break off a kiss, just because you feel the need to burp. You may need to think about that one, for a second or 2.

Never mince outside, or to the gents, if you feel the need to let one go, whilst with your girlfriend. Instead, raise one leg and one arse cheek, emit a loud trumpeting sound, laugh like a maniac and say something similar to 'Ah! Can you smell that?', or 'Aw, that was a wet one!' or 'Ugh, I think I've followed through!'

Follow these guidelines to the letter, if you want to live with mommy and daddy forever and ever and ever........

Monday, 16 February 2009

What Are Your Earliest Memories?

My earliest memory is of waking in my cot, in the middle of the night and seeing snakes crawling all over the covers. I seem to remember that my sleep was disturbed more than once, in this way. Whenever I was ill, as a child, I often became delirious, if I had a high temperature, so I think that, I either saw snakes every time I suffered from delirium, or as a result of a recurring nightmare. Apparently, I slept in a cot until I was about 2 years old, so it isn't necessarily such an early memory as you might think!

My next memory is of sitting up in my pram, looking out, as my mother pushed me to the shops. Again, it isn't a particularly early memory, because I remember my mother telling me, on the day concerned, that it was raining much too hard for me to go into town in my pushchair, so I would have to go in my old pram. I was too big for the pram, of course, so I had to sit up, with the hood raised, because of the rain. Once again, I think that I was about 2 years old.

My next memories date back to when I started school, aged 4. I can vaguely remember my first day at school, feeling sick with anxiety when my mother went home, leaving me in the company of several other rising 5s, in a strange, but bright classroom, furnished with infant-sized desks and chairs. I was an only child and had had very little contact with other children, except for my cousins. I didn't take to school at all, at first and had to be dragged there, crying, a couple of times, during those first few days.

After a short while, I accepted the fact that I had to go to school and didn't mind quite as much. I particularly enjoyed learning to read and learning how to do simple sums. I always looked forward to Wednesdays, because Wednesday afternoons were known as 'choosing' afternoons and we were allowed to play with whatever toys we wished.

Another thing I enjoyed at school was learning how to use money. I don't know whether it was anything to do with the fact that the Bournville factory was situated just a few miles away from us, but we played shops with a wonderful selection of dummy Cadburys chocolate bars, which I found totally fascinating.

I made a few friends, spending most of my playtimes with the same group of girls, whose full names I can still recall, but I chose not to join in on the occasions when they played kiss chase with the boys, or went down to the end of the playground furthest away from the classrooms, so that they could play showing their knickers to the boys. I didn't start playing those sort of games until I was much older.

I did have a boyfriend, though, in those early days. We would walk in the playground, holding hands, at playtimes and we told our parents that we intended to marry each other, when we were older. The gentleman in question recently moved into a house very close to my mother, in the Midlands, with his wife and daughter, but I haven't seen him for a number of years. I sometimes wonder whether he remembers our plans from over 50 years ago!

During my last year, at infant school, when I was 7 years old, my class was taught by the headmistress. She was a dreadful woman - a proverbial spinster - tall, thin, bony and miserable, always dressed in black, wearing flat shoes and thick black stockings. When we painted pictures, she would run round, looking over our shoulders and shrieking 'More water! More water!' if the sky was too blue, or 'More blue! More blue!' if the sky was too pale.

During this last year, we were taught how to knit, if we didn't know already and then spent hours knitting dishcloths, with some sort of yarn, which closely resembled string. I have a vague idea that the boys went off to do something different, whilst the girls did this, but I'm not sure. It was very humiliating, when any one of us dropped a stitch, because we had to take our knitting to the headmistress, at the front of the class, who would generally unravel almost all of our hard work, down to the last 3 or 4 rows. She would then put the stitches back on the needles and thrust our depleted masterpiece back into our disappointed little hands, in a very disapproving and unsympathetic manner.

When we had PE (Physical Education), we had to strip down to our navy blue knickers and the headmistress would take the lesson in the playground, at the front of the school. I have no recollection of the boys' attire, at this time, but, the playground must have been a paedophiles' paradise, on those days, because the school was situated on a busy road, with plenty of traffic and people passing by.

After 3 years of attending infant school, I moved on to junior school, which was further to walk, being a 20 minute journey away from home, as opposed to 10. A few of the children, from my class, went with me to the same school, but the majority of them, I never saw again.

My old infant school was knocked down, many years ago and the whole area has since been totally rebuilt, leaving me unable to point to any place, in particular and say 'That is where my old school stood' because even the road it stood upon no longer exists. I can see the school in my mind's eye, as if it were yesterday. I tend to picture it, with my class standing in the playground in front, having a PE lesson, wearing nothing but our navy blue knickers!

How about you? What are your earliest memories?

Thursday, 12 February 2009

St Valentine's Day Preparations

The more I thought about auntie gwen's post of 7th February, the more I began to feel that, quite often, the only way a girl can ensure that she gets what she wants on St Valentine's day is to organise everything herself!

I've already bought my dress! What do you think?

I don't want to give anyone the wrong idea, of course, so I'd better own up to the fact that I'm not a natural blonde!

Here is a picture of the style of boots I've bought to wear with my new dress. They've arrived just in time for the next fall of snow, I think. They'll certainly keep my legs warm and toasty!

I've ordered a special Valentine's meal to be delivered, on Saturday, just in case we have time to eat.

I've bought some bubbly,

but I wasn't sure whether that would be enough, so I bought a couple of bottles of wine, too.

I'm having a beautiful bouquet of red roses delivered

and a teensy weensy box of delicious chocolates

and I think that's me just about set up!

Oops! Just a minute. I forgot that I'd ordered one more essential item.

It's amazing what you can get on the internet, these days, isn't it? There's only one drawback, though. He's not self-inflatable!

How about you? Got any plans?

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

A Little Treat

I fancied a brisk walk into town and back, yesterday morning, but, unfortunately, it was pouring with rain. I didn't feel like walking in such miserable weather, so I decided, instead, to spoil myself with a long, luxurious bath, as opposed to my usual shower. I thought that I would do the housework first, whilst in my night clothes, rather than afterwards, so I didn't start preparing for my little treat until about 10.30am.

I began to collect together various products to pamper myself, as well as mixing up some olive oil and honey, so that I could moisturise my neck and face, whilst I soaked in the bath and relaxed. I lined up some 'decadently creamy, foaming bath soak', 'intensive, conditioning body lotion' and 'softening foot cream with shea butter' on the bathroom shelf, then went downstairs to make myself a Cappuccino. As soon as it was ready, I took it up to the bathroom, along with a Choco Leibniz, my digital radio and a new paperback.

After undressing, I stepped into the warm, foamy water and lowered myself into the bath, but just as my eager bum cheeks hit the surface of the water, the doorbell rang. I felt slightly irritated, but, assuming that it was the postman, even though I wasn' t expecting anything, I leapt out of the bath, threw on my dressing gown and raced downstairs to open the door. The postman thrust a fairly large parcel, addressed to my son, into my wet hands, followed by a pen, as he needed a signature. I ignored the rather meaningful, but disgusted glance he shot in my direction, as he realised that I was still wearing my night clothes at 11 in the morning, whilst he had been hard at work since 6. He turned abruptly, after retrieving his pen, dashing back towards his van, as if to convince me that his life was filled with a purpose, which mine evidently lacked. On my return to the bathroom, I smiled and lowered myself back into the bath, wincing slightly as my ample posterior bypassed the, by now, rather cool bath suds, to sink, once more, into the all-embracing warmth of the sweet-smelling water.

I brushed the honey and olive oil onto my face and neck, before reaching out for the chocolate biscuit, allowing my mouth to water, just a little, as I anticipated the smooth chocolate touching my excited tongue. The chocolate and crumbs combined into a delightful mixture, as I ate, but, regrettably and all too swiftly, the Choco Leibniz was gone. I reached for my coffee, then, just as I closed my eyes to savour the delicious, incomparable taste of the frothy Cappuccino, the telephone rang. I felt quite irritated, tensing for a moment, before deciding that the caller would have to leave a message, if it was anything of importance.

After draining my Cappuccino, I picked up my book with the intention of settling down to enjoy a good half an hour's read, but something caught my eye, before my glance fell upon the page. Hmm..... From my sitting position, I could see that the skirting board needed a coat of paint, as did the door. I'd forgotten that I hadn't had time to finish painting the woodwork in the bathroom, before I tidied everything away, when we had visitors at New Year. I felt very irritated.

I tried to return to my book, just as something else caught my eye. In the light from the window, catching the shower fitting and the wall tiles, I could see some limescale, which needed to be removed and some mildew, on the grouting. I began to feel exceedingly irritated. Averting my eyes, I attempted to focus, again, on the first page of my book, but I couldn't relax. My eyes darted from side to side, as I glanced around the room. From this particular angle, I could see the pedestal supporting the sink and the waste pipe behind. Both needed wiping. The floor tiles would have benefited from a good vacuuming, too. By this time, I was feeling exceptionally irritated.

I finished the rest of my bath, in record time, towelled myself dry, applied body lotion, foot lotion, dressed and immediately set about blitzing the bathroom, with a potentially explosive mixture of Limelight, Viakal and Dettol mould remover. I raced downstairs and back up again with the heavy, cumbersome vacuum cleaner in tow, then vacuumed the bathroom, followed by the other rooms, whilst I was up there, then finished with the stairs.

After putting the vacuum away, I stood in the hall, for a few seconds, to catch my breath. Phew! I was so hot and sticky, after expending so much energy, that I really needed a shower..........

Friday, 6 February 2009

Bloggers Make The Bestest Friends!

Aims published a post, on the 4th February, which referred to an article, about blogging, entitled Dangers Online. I read the article and found it quite interesting, if rather too much of a generalisation. I couldn't help but feel a certain sense of horror at the suggestion running throughout, however, that it would be better for all bloggers to return to face-to-face conversation, rather than continuing to interact through the medium of blogging. What an idea! I can hardly bear to consider it! Online friendships are infinitely preferable, in my opinion, for the following reasons:

My cyber friends never stare in disapproving disbelief, if I hit the bottle before the sun's over the yardarm and start slurring my comments.

They don't point and laugh cruelly, when I'm blogging and miss my mouth, whilst knocking back the Gordon's, or when the mayo oozes out of my lunchtime sandwich and trickles down my chin.

They don't appear to mind, in the least, if I tuck my paper napkin in the neck of my jumper, slurp my soup, or wipe my mouth with the back of my hand, whilst commenting on their posts.

They're not in the least bit bovvered when I realise that I probably can find room for a hot chocolate with whipped cream, after just downing a 12 inch pizza, all to myself, followed by a sticky toffee pudding.

They never blink an eye, if I giggle, whilst quoffing a bottle of bin end bargain, spraying droplets of gnat's pee and saliva all over my immediate surroundings, when I'm reading their posts.

My bloggy friends allow me the absolute freedom to scratch whatever I want, as frequently as I wish.

I can be anyone I want be, when I'm in their company - but don't panic, bloggy friends. Fortunately, I've never wanted to be anyone other than myself. No, really.

They never make me feel guilty, if I'm still blogging in my Dora The Explorer PJs, when they call in to comment, at lunchtime.

I don't have to get up off my lazy arse to make them a cup of coffee, if they do call by, or offer to share my last chocolate Hobnob.

It doesn't matter if they pay me a surprise visit when I'm waxing my legs, or soaking my feet.

They never count the cobwebs, or criticise the decor.

I don't have to drive, walk, or even get out of my cosy bed to interact with my bloggy friends.

They don't wince, or whip out their sunglasses, when I wear the hideous orange top I bought from Primark in the sale.

They never stare in shock horror, when I tell them I buy some of my clothes from Primark.

They never ask me to lend them a tenner till payday.

They never interrupt me, or shout me down, when I'm in the middle of a post.

They never ask me a question, then hi-jack the conversation again, before I've made my point.

I can moderate all of their comments.

Their eyes never glaze over, when I start to get boring.

They never laugh, when I forget the point of my story.

Now, why did I start relating all of this? Hold on. It'll come to me, in a minute........ You're not laughing, are you?

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

Do You Have Dry Winter Skin?

Well, I hope you're not suffering as much as the lady on the right, but I do bear a vague resemblance to her, at the moment, every time I venture out into the icy weather! Fortunately, unlike the brazen lady in the portrait, I always wear a coat, when going out, in winter, so only my face is affected.

I had no problem with my skin, until I was 13 years old. Quite suddenly, I developed spots and plenty of them. I worked my way through many products, before I finally realised that my skin was sensitive, as well as prone to spots. Any medical treatment for spots was generally too harsh for my skin and I was in my late teens, before my Doctor was finally able to prescribe something, which actually helped my condition.

After a lot of trial and error, I found some skin care products which suited me, but a couple of years later, the range was discontinued and I was forced to go through the whole frustrating process, of finding some suitable alternatives all over again. This pattern has been repeated throughout my life and it has caused a lot of expense at times.

My skin improved gradually, until my late twenties, when I became pregnant. Once more, I developed a lot of unsightly spots, but, after switching to Elizabeth Arden products, the condition of my skin improved considerably. Fortunately, many years passed by, before part of the range I used was discontinued and then, after floundering for a while, I found that I could use some of the Boots No 7 range, instead. I'm rarely sure exactly what causes my skin to react, of course, but, for anyone who seems to suffer in a similar way, I have compiled a list, below, of the products I can use, which seem to suit my sensitive skin:

Cleanser - Boots No 7 Soft & Soothed Gentle Cleanser, normal/dry skin.

Moisturiser - Elizabeth Arden Daily Moisture. (It's great but it costs more than I want to pay, even when I buy it from Superdrug.)

Moisturiser for cold weather - Elizabeth Arden Visible Difference Refining Moisture Cream Complex. (Even more expensive, but good.)

Foundation, face powder, eyeshadow, mascara and lipstick - Boots No 7. (I couldn't wear the mascara or lipstick every day, however and the lipstick does make my lips a bit dry!)

Lip balm - Vaseline Petroleum Jelly.

Deodorant - Vaseline Intensive Care (not the one with aloe vera) and Sanex dermo sensitive.

Shower Cream- Sanex dermo sensitive lactoserum for sensitive skin. (Not the others in the range.)

Hand and body lotion - Vaseline Intensive Care. (Not the one with aloe vera.)

Mouthwash - Dentyl.

I've suffered so many reactions to different cosmetics, in the past, that, for the last few years, I have sometimes turned to natural treatments instead. I've tried out various treatments recommended in magazine articles, or books and a few of these, which have proved effective for me are detailed below:

A tablespoon of honey, mixed with 2 of olive oil has proved a lovely moisturiser for
my neck. I brush it on with a soft brush, leave it for anything from 10 to 30 minutes, then rinse off with warm water. I have also used it on my decollete and face. I have never left it on my face for longer than 10 minutes, however and always avoid the delicate area under my eyes. I also find that the mixture is wonderful for dry hands, when massaged in and left for 10 minutes. This treatment shouldn't be used more than once a week.

A mixture of honey and yogurt makes a good face mask for my skin. I use half a carton of plain unsweetened yogurt and mix in 2 teaspoons of honey. I leave it on for 5 minutes, then rinse off with cold water.

I sometimes use a banana face mask for sore, dry, winter skin, which nothing else will soothe. The mask consists of a mashed banana mixed up with a teaspoon of honey and a little cream. I apply it to my face and leave it for about 10 minutes, before rinsing off with warm water.

An avocado mashed with a banana and 1 tablespoon of thick cream has proved an effective dry skin relief, on occasions, for my lower legs. I usually leave it on for about 10 minutes.

If you fancy trying any of the treatments mentioned above, for yourself, don't forget to bear in mind that my skin is mature, as well as sensitive. It would probably be best if you don't test out any of them the day before going out somewhere special, just in case they don't work for you. I know what it's like to wake up covered in spots on the day you're supposed to be going to a wedding or some other big event. I'm sure I hardly need to mention, either, that these treatments can be a little messy and are best applied in the bathroom! Don't forget to let anyone else in the house know, that you don't want to be disturbed for at least half an hour!

Do you have sensitive skin? Have you discovered a product range, which suits you? The products I currently use are bound to be discontinued eventually, so I would be grateful of any suggestions of others I could try, particularly if they are cheap! Do you have any favourite 'beauty' tips, you would like to share?

Note to Grumpy Old Ken: I do apologise for publishing such a girlie post, but it covers a subject, which is very close to my heart, particularly in winter. Please let me know how you get on with the banana mask!